Yes You Do Need A Lawyer
Realtors are not lawyers and it is against the law for them to give you legal advice. Your Realtor may be familiar with some aspects of your real estate transaction, however, most are not adequately trained in contracts, title issues, and legal analysis. Whether it be the Realtor's fee agreement or answering the question, "Should I buy title insurance?" you need an attorney to help protect your interests.
Review and Drafting Documents
If it's related to residential real estate, send it my way.
I love to work with attorneys who have expertise in areas I do not possess. I collaborate with Minneapolis - St. Paul attorneys, attorneys from other parts of Minnesota and with attorneys from all over the United States depending upon the project. I often need to refer work and enjoy teaming-up with attorneys on litigation and other matters.
Negotiating Realtor Fee Agreements
Realtor fee agreements are often presented as standard forms. They are not. And they are VERY negotiable. I can even help the savviest consumers negotiate commissions. I can help Minnesota consumers from all over the state and am one of a handful of attorneys with expertise in this area. There are a lot of conflicts in the way realtors are paid that create a lot of headaches for consumers. Here are just a few problems with the "standard" forms:
- You may be required to pay a commission even if the transaction does not close.
- Your listing broker gets to decide how much to offer cooperating brokers, not you.
- Some firms will exclude your listing from the most buyer frequented real estate sites like Zillow, Trulia, and Realtor.com.
- You are forced to pay for a buyer broker whether one is used or not.
- Buyer brokers may receive bonuses from listing brokers.
- Buyer brokerage fees are negotiable and if properly negotiated can mean thousands of dollars in buyer savings.
Whether it be a high wealth individual buying a 5 or 10 million dollar home or a first time home buyer, I should be able to save my clients far more than my fee and provide them with much-needed protections.
Negotiating, Drafting or Reviewing Purchase Agreements
The purchase agreement may be the most important document in your entire transaction. I've volunteered on the Minnesota State Bar Association's Residential Forms Committee for many years and am familiar with these forms as well as how they compare to the Realtors' forms. There are multiple forms in use and none are "standard." Builder drafted new construction purchase agreements are particularly onerous and should be avoided.
I can help with transactions in all parts of the Minneapolis - St. Paul area and beyond.
Expert Witness Testimony
I know way more about the real estate brokerage and title insurance industries than anyone should.